Axa Elevate assets rise 20% fuelled by pension freedoms

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Axa Elevate saw a 20 per cent rise in assets to £10bn in the first half of the year, with £1.1bn in inflows in that period driven by the pension freedoms.

Axa’s ability to offer pension freedoms from April enabled the platform’s assets to rise from £8.4bn last year, Axa Wealth chief executive Mike Kellard says.

He says: “Providing access to all of the pension freedoms for advisers and their clients was our main priority and I am very pleased that we were able to offer them across our pension range.”

Axa Elevate hit the £10bn assets mark in May, following record new money taken into the platform in March.

However, the growth in platform assets is slower than in the first half of 2014, when assets grew by 30 per cent, following a surge in Sipp sales after the Budget.

Meanwhile, assets in Axa Wealth rose by 9 per cent in the first half of the year, to £28.8bn, up from £26.5bn in 2014. This growth was slower than the previous year, when assets grew by 10 per cent.

The half-year figures are also a drop from the quarterly results released in May when total assets were £29.1bn.

Total Axa Wealth retail pension sales were up 10 per cent in the first half of 2015 compared to the same period last year, rising from £558m to £612m. Specialist Sipp and investment funds under management rose 4 per cent to £18.2bn.

Axa Investment Managers, the group’s asset management arm, also saw a rise in assets of 11 per cent on last year, taking its assets under management to €694bn (£488bn).

Axa IM saw €28bn of inflows in the first half of the year, with the assets mainly flowing to fixed income, multi-asset and real estate strategies.

“Asset management continued its strong momentum, experiencing high net inflows in both our asset managers, as well as a strong increase in earnings,” says Henri de Castries, chairman and chief executive of AXA.

Architas, the multi-manager arm of Axa, also saw a rise in assets from £13.3bn to £14bn – a 5 per cent jump.